[Tweeters] Eastside Audubon 27 Feb 2012 Vantage trip
bellasoc at isomedia.com
Fri Mar 1 19:35:55 PST 2013
On Wednesday, Eastside Audubon took a field trip over to the Vantage area. The morning started out overcast and threatening, but the Snoqualmie Pass forecast was for good conditions. The road over the pass was clear and slightly wet, but in good condition, except for a lot of spray. By the time we got down to Easton it was clearing, and by Cle Elum it was clear and sunny. That held for the day with no, or very little, wind.
As we went past Cle Elum there was a TUNDRA SWAN on the ponds.
As we rolled into Kittitas we saw several EURASIAN COLLARED-DOVEs on the wires. HOUSE SPARROWs were in town. As we made our way east we picked up more Eurasian Collared-Doves and some MOURNING DOVES and some ROCK PIGEONs, a couple of GREAT BLUE HERONs, and a distant perched RED-TAILED HAWK. As we made our way up Carobou Rd. we saw EUROPEAN STARLINGs. Along Vantage Highway, we saw and got good looks at a perched PRAIRIE FALCON. We stopped on Parke Creek Rd and scanned the pond - it was partly frozen (the farmer said it had frozen the night before. Other than RED-WINGED BLACKBIRD and BELTED KINGFISHER, there were some CANADA GEESE and several KILLDEER.
We stopped near the entrance to the Wild Horse Wind Farm and tried for Sage Sparrow without raising one. Across the road we heard a WESTERN MEADOWLARK. Down at the lower Quilomene Wildlife Area we tried again for SAGE SPARROW and heard one a couple of times, but it never came into view. Up the dirt road a bit we got very nice looks at HORNED LARK.
Down at the bottom of the hill we scanned the Columbia River and picked up BUFFLEHEAD, COMMON GOLDENEYE, COMMON LOON, HORNED GREBE and SAY'S PHOEBE. Up at the interpretive center, we saw another Say's Phoebe and the river had more Bufflehead and Common Goldeneye, as well as a GREATER SCAUP, a LESSER SCAUP, EARED GREBE, MALLARD. Driving down toward Wanapum State Park we passed 3 AMERICAN KESTRELs. The park in undergoing extensive electrical and irrigation renovation and the main area is closed. Moving on down Huntzinger Rd. we heard a ROCK WREN at the pullout.
At various places along the route we saw RUDDY DUCK, RING-NECKED PHEASANT, BALD EAGLE, NORTHERN FLICKER, BLACK-BILLED MAGPIE, AMERICAN CROW, BEWICK'S WREN, AMERICAN ROBIN, SONG SPARROW, HOUSE FINCH, AMERICAN GOLDFINCH.
It was a great day in the bright sunshine in eastern Washington with 37 species. We didn't run into rain until we crossed back west of Snoqualmie Pass.
Brian H. Bell
mail to bell asoc at iso media dot com
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